Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Alan Johnson: I’m Right, Everyone Else Is Wrong

Postman Pat is in CiF pontificating on why the ECHR is wrong, and NuLab’s authoritarian instincts are bang on the money:
Today, on DNA retention, the government must balance several factors. First, there's the scientific evidence, which is still sparse.
And will be ignored if you choose to do so for political purposes, as Professor Nutt will tell everyone who wants to listen…
The most recent research supports the case for the retention of DNA profiles of those arrested but not convicted.
And it’s linked to in this article so we can all judge for oursel….

Oh, my mistake. It isn’t. We just have to take Postman Pat’s word for it.
. I reject the claim by the Human Genetics Commission yesterday that large numbers of people are being arrested simply to collect their DNA. There is no substantive evidence to suggest this is so.
Best you lay of the ‘substantive evidence’ line, Pat. We have all seen through that one…
No one can have their DNA taken unless arrested for a recordable offence.
And the list of recordable offences has grown massively under the auspices of….which political party, again?
As the Association of Chief Police Officers has said, arresting someone is a major step, never taken lightly.
Oh, really?
It is unlikely that Mark Dixie, the murderer of Sally Anne Bowman, would ever have been found had his DNA profile not been recorded following his involvement in a pub brawl, after which he had been released without charge.
You mean, you’ve no faith in the police to track people down without this overarching database? Better sack them all then, Pat…
Take also the case of Abdul Azad, arrested for violent disorder in Birmingham in February 2005. He had a DNA sample taken and was released without charge. In July 2005, a stranger rape occurred in Stafford, 25 miles away. DNA evidence was found to match Azad's. The senior officer said he would otherwise never have been caught.
Well, he would say that, wouldn’t he? Far easier just to tap a key and find the suspect rather than do all that tedious detecting
It has also helped protect the innocent. Sean Hodgson, who was wrongfully convicted of murdering and raping Teresa de Simone in 1982, would probably not have been cleared without DNA analysis showing he was not the killer.
Err, what? How would having his DNA on a database prevent this?
Under proposals soon to be considered by parliament, the DNA profiles of all those convicted of crimes – irrespective of the offence – will continue to be held indefinitely.
The ECHR can go take a flying one, can they, Pat?
The bill will also give police the power to take samples from those convicted of serious violent and sexual offences in the past, before DNA was routinely taken…
So, it’s retroactive as well? Fantastic. How long before we are routinely tagged and numbered at birth like livestock?
It seems there is all-party consensus on these two measures.
Except in the next paragraph you state:
The Guardian has joined the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats in arguing for the Scottish system of three years' retention
Some ‘consensus’…
The Scottish model is said to be a success, but by whose standards, and by what evidence?
By the standards of the ECHR, which measured the English system against it, and found it wanting. That good enough for you?
This is a classic home secretary dilemma.
Pity we don’t have a classic home secretary then, isn’t it? Sadly, we are stuck with you.

For the time being, anyway…
It is not a clear-cut choice between liberty and security – between siding with the civil liberties lobby or the forces of law and order.
Yes. It is, actually.
The far less headline-friendly reality…
Ah, here we have it. NuLabour’s policy is driven by the tabloids.
… is the need to balance all these factors – protecting the public, but in a way that's proportionate to the threat.
You have as much idea about what is ‘propotionate’ as the cop in that linked story.

But ok, then. Let’s see all MPs and their families go first, eh?
I believe that the government's proposals do precisely that but I also welcome the debate as a necessary part of implementing such sensitive measures.
Typical NuLab. You welcome a debate, but you’ll ignore it.

We can’t get rid of this shower fast enough for me.

12 comments:

indigomyth said...

//Postman Pat is in CiF pontificating on why the ECHR is wrong//

Not everything from the EU is diabolical. It does have some good positions - such as individual human freedom. Though, it has subsumed this admirably aim to that of collectivist mentalities.

billgav said...

I have no problem with police having my dna details dont see problem unless your guilty of something

Henry Crun said...

Billgave, billgav, billgav... where to start?

Tell you what, why don't you pop down to the local nick tomorrow morning and volunterr a sample for the database. Go on, I dare you.

What's to stop the police then using that database in order to make some cash. Firstly by selling it to insurance companies who would be delighted to discover whether you were at risk from a congenital heart disease, or other genetic defect so that they can a) increase your premiums or b) renege on payout when you die because of an undisclosed illness.

Or how about some rogue cop fitting you up for a crime and using your dna sample to plant evidence at a crime scene because you came across a bit bolshy during a routine traffic stop.

Or how about they leave the data on a train, or lose it in the post or mismatch the samples and you end up getting arrested for a crime you didn't commit in the first place.

See, the govt's record on databases, IT systems and any administrative system at all is appalling. I woundn't trust them to see my gran across the road let alone have a sample of my dna.

Laurence said...

Indigomyth:

The ECHR is not an EU institution.

ivan said...

You forgot his black and white cat - Balls - who is stitching up all the home educating parents.

Trooper Thompson said...

Thank you Laurence, that saves me from point one!

Alan Johnson has so many red herrings in his article, he's risking a fine for breaking fishing quotas.

He uses examples of arrested people having their dna checked against a database of unsolved crimes. This has nothing to do with taking dna and storing it in perpetuity.

The labour government is run by a bunch of Fabian control-freaks, who see individual freedom as a threat to their scientific slave-state.

indigomyth said...

My mistake.

Rob said...

Only the BBC could put scare quotes around the word 'extremist' when the subject is Hizb ut-Tahrir:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/8379070.stm

An anti-semitic organisation banned in many racist countries such as...er...Germany, which believes that infidels are second-class citizens to be ruled over by a Muslim caliphate - surely a judgement of them as extremist can only be subjective?

Meanwhile, anyone who peacefully demonstrates against Islamism is branded as extremist and "far-Right" by the BBC.

JuliaM said...

"Not everything from the EU is diabolical. It does have some good positions - such as individual human freedom."

Yes, but like greedy kids in a pick'n'mix, our government seems determined to ignore the ones they don't like...

"...dont see problem unless your guilty of something..."

Ah, right. The old 'If you have nothing to fear...' tack. Tell me, does that ever work? Do people ever fall for that one?

"...the govt's record on databases, IT systems and any administrative system at all is appalling. I woundn't trust them to see my gran across the road let alone have a sample of my dna."

Spot on!

"Alan Johnson has so many red herrings in his article, he's risking a fine for breaking fishing quotas."

Heh!

JuliaM said...

"Only the BBC could put scare quotes around the word 'extremist' when the subject is Hizb ut-Tahrir..."

Oh, good grief!

Anonymous said...

So that's a rapist and a killer caught? And you're against this? Brains not your long suit, are they?

nbc said...

So when a DNA record is deleted from the database, is it also removed from any backups or snapshots taken prior to the deletion?

Just wondering...